Salt Spring Island, British Columbia, has long been known as a mecca for top-flight artists, musicians and writers. The Salt Spring National Art Prize (SSNAP) was established in 2014 to recognize, showcase and publicize the accomplishments of Canadian visual artists and the vibrant local arts community. With $41,000 in awards, the 2015, 2017 and 2019 iterations of the prize were vivid representations of the best in contemporary Canadian art selected from thousands of submissions from across the country. Check out the 2019 finalist catalogue here.
The call for SSNAP submissions opens January 1, 2021. Canadian citizens and permanent residents of Canada who are 18 years of age and older as of January 1, 2020, are invited to submit their two-dimensional and three-dimensional artwork for consideration. Artists whose practices demonstrate originality, quality, integrity and creativity are encouraged to submit pieces with real visual impact and depth of meaning. Submissions must be completed by the artists, whose identities remain anonymous to the jury during the submission and selection processes. Finalists will be announced in July 2021 at historic Mahon Hall on Salt Spring Island, where an exhibition of the finalists’ work will take place in September/October 2021.
The art prize will showcase approximately 50 finalists chosen by a national jury. This year we are excited to announce the following jurors for the 2021 prize: Michelle Jacques, chief curator at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria; Ydessa Hendeles, artist, collector and head of the Ydessa Hendeles Art Foundation in Toronto; David Diviney, senior curator at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia; and Judy Anderson, First Nations artist/educator.
This is a critical moment for supporting the arts. As SSNAP founding director Ronald T. Crawford notes: “In this unprecedented time for visual artists across the country, we are excited and proud to move forward with SSNAP 2021. Although the uncertainty of COVID-19 protocols makes scheduling the events difficult to finalize, we are committed to a live finalist exhibition showcasing some of the best in Canadian art!”